3 arrested, 1 sought after crashing car, pointing gun at good Samaritan

Published: Friday, February 09, 2018 @ 5:07 AM

Police had three people in custody and were looking for a fourth.
Leon Neal/Getty Images
Police had three people in custody and were looking for a fourth.(Leon Neal/Getty Images)

crash in North Carolina ended with a group of men pointing a gun at a good Samaritan in Charlotte, police said.

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Officers said three people are in custody and they are looking for a fourth suspect involved in the wreck, which happened around 2:30 a.m.

Police said the suspects in the car jumped out and ran after the vehicle flipped into a ditch.

A witness told investigators she stopped to help but that one of the suspects pulled a gun on her but didn’t pull the trigger.

Three men were taken into custody a block away from the crash. Two of the men were taken to the hospital and the third was placed in police custody.

No names have been released.

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Could blood and urine test be used to diagnose autism?

Published: Saturday, February 24, 2018 @ 4:08 AM

An autistic child looks out a window.
China Photos/Getty Images
An autistic child looks out a window.(China Photos/Getty Images)

A newly developed blood and urine test could potentially detect autism in young children.

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That’s according to new research from scientists in the United Kingdom and Italy who conducted tests searching for damage to proteins previously known to be higher in children with autism spectrum disorders.

The study, published this week in the academic journal Molecular Autism, tested 38 children between 5-12 years old with autism and 31 without, looking for differences in samples of urine and blood between the two groups.

The results revealed that children with autism had greater protein damage when examining plasma in their blood, which causes higher levels of an oxidation marker called dityrosine as well as sugar-modified compounds known as advanced glycation end-products.

"We have found that the power of measuring damaged proteins to the brain may be a cause for a development of autism," Dr. Paul Thornalley, professor of systems biology at the University of Warwick and one of the study’s lead researchers, explained to CNN.

According to Thornalley, previous research has also shown a connection between autism and proteins that were not damaged, the reverse of this study.

"Our discovery could lead to earlier diagnosis and intervention. We hope the tests will also reveal new causative factors," Dr. Naila Rabbani, another lead researcher from the University of Warwick, told The Guardian.

"With further testing we may reveal specific plasma and urinary profiles – or 'fingerprints' – of compounds with damaging modifications. This may help us improve the diagnosis of ASD and point the way to new causes of ASD,” she said.

While the new results appear promising, some researchers have expressed caution about the study’s small sample size and the study’s lack of a concrete diagnosis plan.

"This study may give us clues about why autistic people are different but it does not provide a new method for diagnosis. It is far too early for that," Dr. James Cusack, director of science at the UK autism research charity Autistica, told the BBC.

"We don't know whether this technique can tell the difference between autism, ADHD, anxiety or other similar conditions. The study also only looked at a small group of people," he pointed out. "The best way to diagnose autism is still through clinical interview and observation."

But despite the criticism, the scientists behind the research are calling it a "first step" toward developing a simple test. They aim to move forward with further research, performing the tests on a larger group including younger children.

"We have the method, we have everything. All we need to do is repeat it," Rabbani said. "I would really like to go forward with younger children, maybe two years, or even one year old. Then the next step will be to validate in a larger cohort. Then the tests will be ready for screening."

More than 3.5 million people in the U.S. currently live with autism spectrum disorders, according to statistics from the Autism Society. The development disorder, which mainly affects social interaction and leads to behavioral problems, is estimated to have genetic causes in 30 percent of cases. The other 70 percent of autism cases are believed to be caused by mutations of genetics and environmental factors combined.

Although many individuals with autism go on to live normal productive lives, 35 percent of young adults with the disorder are unable to work jobs or pursue higher education after high school.

Doctors currently rely on a series of behavioral tests to diagnose the disorder. These can take a great deal of time and are not always accurate. If a blood or urine test could provide a faster and more definitive diagnosis, it would go a long way to ensure young children received the treatment and resources they need earlier on.

However, although experts see the new research as promising, they are still cautioning that such a test is still a long way from being viable.

"This is a promising area; however, this is a very long way indeed from a 'test for autism,' " Dr. Max Davie, spokesman for the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, said. "It is important that it is not adopted with too much enthusiasm."

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Indiana man's casket discovered missing from gravesite after wife's death

Published: Saturday, February 24, 2018 @ 3:17 AM

An Indiana woman was upset to discover that her father's remains were not buried beneath his grave marker.
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
An Indiana woman was upset to discover that her father's remains were not buried beneath his grave marker.(Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

An Indiana woman is angry after learning her father’s casket is missing from his gravesite, WISH reported.

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Mary Helen Samson Bovenschen died Feb. 18 at the age of 88. She was to buried next to her husband, Charles Bovenschen, who died Nov. 4, 2006 at age 80. But the couple’s daughter, Sandi Vasel, was stunned when speaking to a funeral home employee after her mother’s service Wednesday at Lincoln Memory Gardens in Whitestown. The employee told her that cemetery officials had encountered a “technical glitch,” WTHR reported.

“They lost my dad. They don’t know where my dad is. He’s not there. He’s not in the grave,” Vasel told WXIN.

Charles Bovenschen’s casket was not in the family plot because of the glitch, and cemetery officials were at a loss to explain why.

“That’s the term they used,” Vasel said. “I thought the technical glitch was because it was too muddy.”

The cemetery had moved Mary Bovenschen’s service into the mausoleum area of the facility, WISH reported. After the service, Vasel learned that her father’s remains were missing.

“I stood there for a minute and I said, ‘So, what you’re telling me is you don’t know where my dad’s at.’ She (official) said, ‘No, we don’t.’

“I froze. I completely just froze.”

The Bovenschens were married on Aug. 16, 1946, and celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary three months before Charles’ death. 

They bought a plot at Lincoln Memory Gardens, and that was where Charles was supposed to be buried. 

Vasel said that when her father died, the ground was so muddy that there could not be a graveside service. However, the family did see the area where he was supposed to be buried, WTHR reported.

Apparently, he wasn’t buried there.

"I know mistakes get made, but when you're talking about the remains of a loved one, I think you need to be vigilant on putting them where they belong," Vasel said.

The cemetery was sold to Stonemar Partners in 2010. A company spokesman said they have apologized to Vasel and her family and are launching an internal investigation, WTHR reported.

“You're grief-stricken, you're putting your loved one in the ground. You don't think to make sure it's the right hole," Vasel told WTHR.

Mary Bovenschen’s final resting place has been put on hold until cemetery officials can locate her husband’s casket, WTHR reported.

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Proposed bill in California would provide a choice in driver's license photos

Published: Saturday, February 24, 2018 @ 1:22 AM

California drivers soon may have a say in picking the photos for their driver's licenses.
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
California drivers soon may have a say in picking the photos for their driver's licenses.(Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

Have you ever met anyone who liked their driver’s license photo? 

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Of course not. 

Photos on driver’s licenses always seem to show a person at his or her worst, but a bill proposed in the California state legislature would give drivers a choice, KABC reported.

The bill would allow drivers to have multiple photos taken, and would allow them to choose a favorite for the license.

While the bill would grant drivers freedom of choice, it would be more expensive for drivers getting their photos taken, KABC reported.

The bill does not specify the exact cost, but notes that additional revenue would go toward driver's education programs in California’s public schools, KABC reported.

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Teen admits to killing Tennessee couple, setting apartment on fire

Published: Saturday, February 24, 2018 @ 1:01 AM



Fox13Memphis.com
(Fox13Memphis.com)

A Tennessee man was arrested in connection with the deaths of a Memphis couple who was found dead in an apartment that caught fire Thursday afternoon.

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Aareon Berryman, 18, was charged with two counts of first-degree murder, especially aggravated robbery, aggravated arson, possession of marijuana with the intent to manufacture or sell, and possession of ecstasy with the intent to manufacture or sell. 

On Thursday afternoon, an Memphis Police Department officer heard multiple gunshots coming from an apartment complex.

Moments later, the officer found Berryman running northbound from an apartment unit engulfed in flames. After a short foot chase, Berryman was caught and taken into custody. Officers asked the suspect if anyone was still in the apartment. 

Berryman told police there were two other people inside the burning apartment where he "left them."

The Memphis Fire Department arrived and found the body of Brandon Allen lying on the kitchen floor and the body of Regina Allen in the back bedroom. They were pronounced dead on the scene, officials said.

The couple had celebrated Regina's birthday four days ago.

Berryman admitted to killing both victims, taking their property, and setting their apartment on fire. Police said the suspect had an AR-15, loaded handgun, two jars of marijuana, three plastic bags of marijuana, three prescription pill bottles, and a bottle of charcoal lighter fluid in his possession at the time of his arrest.

Officials said eight to 16 apartment units were completely or partially burned out in the process. The total damage was estimated at $254,000 for buildings and $76,000 in its contents, police said.

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